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Men more likely to stick with girlfriends who sleep with other women than other men
Date:1/27/2011

AUSTIN, TexasMen are more than twice as likely to continue dating a girlfriend who has cheated on them with another woman than one who has cheated with another man, according to new research from a University of Texas at Austin psychologist.

Women show the opposite pattern. They are more likely to continue dating a man who has had a heterosexual affair than one who has had a homosexual affair.

The study, published last month in the journal Personality and Individual Differences, provides new insight into the psychological adaptations behind men's desire for a variety of partners and women's desire for a committed partner. These drives have played a key role in the evolution of human mating psychology.

"A robust jealousy mechanism is activated in men and women by different types of cues those that threaten paternity in men and those that threaten abandonment in women," says Jaime C. Confer, the study's lead author and a doctoral candidate in evolutionary psychology.

Confer conducted the study with her father, Mark D. Cloud, a psychology professor at Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania.

The researchers asked 700 college students to imagine they were in a committed romantic and sexual relationship with someone they've been dating for three months. They were then asked how they would respond to infidelity committed by the imagined partner.

Some participants were told their partners had been unfaithful with a man, others with a woman. Some were told their partners had an affair with one person, others with multiple partners. Some were told the infidelity happened once, others twice.

Regardless of the number of episodes or partners, the study found that:

  • Overall, men demonstrated a 50 percent likelihood of continuing to date a partner who has had a homosexual affair and a 22 percent likelihood of staying with a woman after a heterosexual affair.
  • Women demonstrated
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Contact: Gary Susswein
susswein@austin.utexas.edu
512-471-4945
University of Texas at Austin
Source:Eurekalert

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